Purple Tuesdays are back! Show you support by wearing our union PURPLE, wearing your SEIU 668 button, or other statements of support for the vital work our members do for Pennsylvania and those that need these important programs to survive.
STATEWIDE DAY OF ACTION WRAP-UP – SEPTEMBER 21, 2017
A special recognition to all members who participated in the recent statewide day of action on Thursday September 21st! Many thanks to those who posted and or shared pictures via social media. We are still adding some of these pics to the photo album. You can find pictures of the events that were held in Dauphin county, Erie, Pittsburgh, and many other areas here: http://bit.ly/2fpDbaU
Over the last few weeks, we’ve encouraged you to contact your state Representatives and Senators about the state budget, and we’ve seen the results. Although we could not stop the House from passing a dangerous bill to fund the budget, your letters and calls have encouraged the Senate to block it.
It’s time to take action again because, as you may have seen, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the state’s credit rating this past week. This will lead to higher interest costs and tax increases at all levels of government for years to come. S&P acted not just because this year’s budget is not funded, but because Speaker Turzai and his fellow extremists in the House refuse to even consider legislation that would provide recurring revenues to balance the budget now and in the future.
Once again it’s critical for us to contact House members and ask them to demand that Speaker Turzai bring legislation to the floor that provides long-term funding for state programs, including a severance tax on natural gas drilling, also known as a shale tax.
At a time when too many state legislators refuse to act responsibly to balance the budget, they desperately need to hear us, the voters¸ telling them that the time has come to tax natural gas drillers at the same rate as other states with more expensive and less abundant gas reserves than Pennsylvania.
The funding for programs that employ SEIU 668 members across Pennsylvania are dependent on a fair budget that holds corporations accountable and funds human services, education, public safety, infrastructure and protects our environment.
Download the most recent report from our Legislative and Political Director, Christopher Hundley: http://bit.ly/2fFOlFo
UC DAY OF ACTION
Lawmakers in Harrisburg have failed to fund the unemployment compensation system since December of 2016 when more than 500 workers were furloughed! It now takes as long as eight weeks to obtain benefits after filing an initial claim. Without a long-term funding fix, three more service centers will be forced to close, and claimants will no longer be able to speak to a person on the phone regarding their unemployment benefits. Long wait times and benefit delays will only get worse until state lawmakers fix the problem! Save the date and download a flyer: http://bit.ly/2hosz9b Contact the communications department at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need a customized flyer for this day of action.
NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION – Monday, September 25th
Join us this Monday, September 25th and tell Congress to vote No on the Graham-Cassidy healthcare repeal bill. Working people need your voice to stop the most radical repeal bill yet. Call 866-426-2631, tell Congress to vote No on Graham-Cassidy. #VoteNO #SAVEMEDICAID
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of retired SEIU Local 668 member and business agent Erma Rhodes.
“Erma Rhodes was a former Business Agent of our union and a leader in the labor movement. Erma’s warmth and engaging smile always left you feeling great. Her personality lit up the room and she had a positive effect on all she met. Erma will be greatly missed.” – Tom Herman, President
Erma came to our local from the Pennsylvania Employment Security Employee’s Association, SEIU Local 675 which represented all the Employment Security Offices where Erma started as an Intermittent Intake Interviewer.
Erma became a permanent Employment Interviewer but was always sensitive to the plight of intermittent employees and, with the help of her friend and fellow activist Bob Derda, worked to obtain permanent status for IIIs that had worked uninterrupted for years without being granted regular status.
After Local 675 was combined with Local 668, Erma eventually became a Chapter Officer in what was then known as the Northwest Chapter. Well liked and able quickly grasp the shared problems of the welfare workers and the ES workers, Erma became close friends with other Chapter Officers like Chapter President Chuck Ramsdale and CAO Committee members Jeannette Thames and Nora Lavely. Erma soon was elected Northwest Chapter President and served on the Statewide Executive Board. Erman on staff in the early 1990’s and served as a business agent until her retirement.
On behalf of the officers, staff and members we send our condolences to Erma’s family, friends and co-workers.
*A special thanks to Business Agent Dave Ramsey for providing the background information on Erma’s career. Dave and Erma worked together in the Erie office for many years.
The following links contain important information regarding upcoming elections for President, Secretary-Treasurer, trustee and all other statewide offices.
The Official Election Notice has a complete list of dates, and other information regarding the election.
In addition please check our webpage at www.seiu668.org for updated information on the elections. Candidates for president, secretary-treasurer and trustee are able to submit a written statement and a video which will be posted on our website soon. (In accordance with the internal election rules).
SEIU DISASTER RELIEF OPPORTUNITIES
More than 60,000 SEIU members live in areas that have been impacted by the recent hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.
It’s times like this when being united in a strong union really matter. We are joining together to use our strength in numbers and provide support and relief as these communities begin to recover and rebuild. SEIU members and staff can contribute to the SEIU Disaster Relief Fund – https://action.seiu.org/page/
On behalf of President Herman we would like to thank the members of our staff who belong to Union Employees Local One and recently contributed one thousand dollars for disaster relief!